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Clemson Basketball 2015-16 Season Preview: New Players

For the first time in six years under Brad Brownell, Clemson basketball returns their leading scorer from the previous year in Jaron Blossomgame. Nevertheless, new faces are the norm in the ever-revolving door of college basketball that routinely involves transfers and early departures to the NBA, and they will play a crucial role in the 2015-16 season for Clemson basketball. In this article, we take a closer look at how each individual newcomer could play a role for Clemson this season.

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Avry Holmes

The 6'2" transfer will be eligible this year as a Redshirt Junior. Holmes transfers in from San Francisco where he was a WCC All-Freshman team selection in his first year and an honorable mention All-WCC selection in his second year at San Francisco. His Sophomore year he was also the leading scorer for the team and shot 41% from the 3-point line. That ability to knock down 3's will be what makes or breaks his contribution to this basketball team.

Holmes will most likely share time with Roper as the primary ball-handler and look for him be the starting point guard to begin the season. In the exhibition against Lenoir-Rhyne the other night, he didn't shoot well or look super great, but expect him to settle in as a regular contributor to this team. Holmes has proven himself as a consistent 3-point threat at the college level. Replacing Rod Hall's defense and leadership will be something I'm not expecting to see from Holmes, but if he can provide an offensive spark and play adequate defense, then I wouldn't expect much of a drop-off from Hall last year and Holmes this year. Holmes is by far Clemson's most important newcomer to the 2015-16 season.

Ty Hudson

The 6'1" combo guard out of Mableton, GA was a four-star prospect by many recruiting outlets and rated as high as the no. 91 prospect in the country by Hudson is a tough, gritty guard that will be expected to contribute to the depth of this team. With the loss of Austin Ajukwa, Hudson's progression and development will become even more important to Clemson basketball's success this year. I expect Hudson to make somewhat of an impact during the first half of the season, but don't be surprised to see him have more of a major role as the year progresses in the second half. Some see Hudson as a type of guard cut out of the Rod Hall mold. Although there are some similarities, I could see Hudson's career at Clemson looking more like Demontez Stitt. Hudson may not be as important to this team's success as Holmes, but he is important nonetheless due to the depth concerns on the wing.

Legend Robertin

It just might be that the athletic Junior College transfer from England may have the most potential out of the newcomers this season. Robertin is an offensively raw, athletic 7-footer who will be classified as a Sophomore this year. He has legitimate potential to be a defensive anchor for Clemson basketball in the coming years and may even contribute there this year. Unfortunately, we don't know when we will be able to see him take the floor with some eligibility issues that are concerning. If Robertin isn't cleared to play till next semester, Clemson basketball could have some serious depth concerns with big man Siddy Djitte recovering from knee surgery as well. Once/If Robertin gets cleared to play, I suspect to see him on the floor regularly although I would be surprised if he contributes much on the offensive end of the floor. Defense and rebounding are where Robertin needs to shine to be a contributor to this team.

Overall Outlook

Brad Brownell said on ESPNU on media day for the ACC that in order for this year's team to make the NCAA Tournament, there must be improved 3-point shooting and rebounding. Even though the NCAA tournament may be a lofty goal, from what we know about these new players, they are going to be important in the improvement of both of those areas and therefore critically important to the success of Clemson basketball in 2015-16.

We all know recruiting can make or break a team in college athletics. Our football season has only reinforced that truth even more. Dabo and his staff have been some of the country's best recruiters over the past few years and this year is showing that. For Clemson basketball to take the next step, Brad Brownell and his staff will need to take the next step in the ability to bring in elite new players. The new facilities will help, but what Brownell was able to get in this years class of new players will need to be major contributors in the first year of the new arena and will be crucial to his future at Clemson.